Experience the Mississippi State Capitol premieres July 15

Published 2:52 pm Monday, July 12, 2021

Experience the Mississippi State Capitol: A National Historic Landmark will air Thursday, July 15 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, July 18 at 10:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. on Mississippi Public Broadcasting Television. This 30-minute video tour highlights the history, architecture and majesty of the Mississippi State Capitol and was produced for the Capitol’s web page.

For the past few years, the Capitol Visitor Services department considered providing a virtual tour of the place that houses Mississippi’s seat of government.  When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020, the idea became more urgent. Though the Capitol remained open to the public, guided tours and visitation came to a halt.

“With the devastation of the pandemic consuming so many, we all needed something positive to focus our efforts on. In that regard, 2020 was the opportune time to secure a virtual tour of the Capitol,” said Brenda Davis, curator of the Mississippi State Capitol. Davis, along with Capitol Visitor Services Director Kathy Broom and Assistant Visitor Services Director Ashley Kincses, began in earnest seeking a company to produce the video.

They wanted top-quality, affordable work and didn’t want to look outside of the state for it. Hence, the call to MPB. John Gibson, MPB’s Director of Television, wrote a “beautiful proposal” at a cost significantly lower than what other companies would have charged, Davis said.

Recognizing the value and educational significance of the project, the House of Representatives Management Committee and Senate Rules Committee approved funding for production, which began in late summer, early fall of 2020.

Weeks of filming, mainly on weekends, followed. MPB’s Katie Savage produced the program, and Art McAlpin was the Director of Photography. Along with Visitor Services, the Capitol’s maintenance, police and IT departments assisted MPB staff along the way. The completed work has left many blown away.

“Our TV team did a fantastic job producing this historical video of the state Capitol, with videography that is simply stunning,” said MPB Executive Director Ronnie Agnew. “It is an amazingly insightful look at the history of the state Capitol and the visionaries who spared no detail in making it special. It is my desire to see that this gets into the hands of every school in Mississippi.”

In a letter to Agnew, Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann said, “I watched the Virtual Tour of the Capitol you and your team at Mississippi Public Broadcasting created and it is exceptional. The video is seamless from the history and architecture to capturing every detail which makes our Capitol so ornate and refined. Your work is a visual reminder of our State’s ‘public spirit, pride, and integrity’ to every Mississippi citizen and those who transcend our State lines. I greatly appreciate your work.”

MPB is a state agency that also operates as a PBS and NPR affiliate broadcasting station. For more information visit www.mpbonline.org. Find all MPB press releases here.